29 September 2015 – PNW Migration Update

Migrants are still on the move.  A fairly heavy movement was picked up on the ATX station (Seattle) radar.  It was a bit more moderate down here in the Metro Area (RTX), and concentrated in the east counties.

I sill haven’t resolved the disc space issue.  But, i am leaning toward starting a new blog with forward and backward references.  I would like the new blog to be as robust as this one (information pages and reference links) but that will take a lot of time to do.  So it will be an “off-season” project.  Which means the real purpose of this current blog – to leave an archive of the radar images – has reached its unfortunate and technical end.

So, this is the second to the last post for this blog.  The next one will be with a link to the new blog.  But i’m not sure when that will be.

In the mean time, all of the tools you need to track migration can be found in both the “Pages” section and in the links on the right hand side of the page.

2014 Fall Migration Update

Well, it had to happen some time.  The blog is running out of free disk space.  So, posting from now on will be sparse and limited to a few Choice snapshots of each season.

Like last night and this morning.  Excellent migrant bloom sustained throughout the night, with tracks up into the Puget trough.  And — as a bonus — at 13:30 UTC (06:30 PDT) for four frames there can be seen the morning exodus of the swallow roost on the border of Yamhill and Marion Counties.  It last for about four to six frames and the density is impressive.  (Click on the thumbnail below to bring up a larger animated .gif file)

20140910_BV-RTX

30 May 2014 PNW Migration Update

This is the last update for the season.  With a bit of luck i’ll be back in the fall.

And we close with a stream of feathers in the sky.

Pacific Northwest Radar: (Click on the links below to open the .gif files in a new window)

30 May Base Reflectivity - Portland (KRTX)

30 May Base Reflectivity – Gray’s Harbor (KLGX)

30 May Base Reflectivity - Seattle (KATX)

Here is the grand view of the winds aloft from Earth:

30 May Earth: WPD at 850 mb

Here is Paul’s archived National Radar Composite from yesterday. Look at the wind map, and then the radar.

And here are the weather maps (click on any image to bring up a full gallery view)

29 May 2014 PNW Migration Update

Some rather unstable weather, WNW winds, it’s late in the season …. and still there is a sea of feathers overhead.  Well, maybe just a puddle, but impressive none the less.

As the high pressure ridge builds in behind our recent low we can expect the winds to shift to a more northerly component, but the skies should clear.  So it will depend on the strength of the winds tomorrow night to determine the magnitude of the last covered flight of the season.  I’m hoping the winds are light and the sky is filled with the remnants of the feathered travelers.  The past few nights i have regularly heard the nocturnal flight calls of Swainson’s Thrush – it’s comforting, and brings a bit of joy to my world.

Before we take a look at the loops: “Message Date: May 28 2014 15:26:44 KRTX MAY HAVE PERIODIC DATA LOSS TODAY FROM 28/16Z THROUGH 29/02Z DUE TO AN AWIP S UPGRADE AT WFO PORTLAND.”

I have no idea what that means and i don’t really see any problems in the loop, but some more discerning eye might so, there you have it.

29 May Base Reflectivity - Portland (KRTX)

29 May Base Reflectivity – Gray’s Harbor (KLGX)

29 May Base Reflectivity - Seattle (KATX)

Here is the grand view of the winds aloft from Earth:

29 May Earth: WPD at 850 mb

Here is Paul’s archived National Radar Composite from yesterday. Look at the wind map, and then the radar.

And here are the weather maps (click on any image to bring up a full gallery view)

27 May 2014 PNW Migration Update

Winds are light and out of the west — no big deal.  Migrants continue to flow north and are now looking to fill in the remaining nesting sites.  “FOS” is a term of the past on the listserves.  In eastern Oregon a number of expected vagrants are taking up bandwidth as birders flock to Malheur NWR as surely as Buffleheads fly to Manitoba.

This will be the last week for updates this season — unless something mega turns up in the region.

Pacific Northwest Radar: (Click on the links below to open the .gif files in a new window)

27 May Base Reflectivity - Portland (KRTX)

27 May Base Reflectivity – Gray’s Harbor (KLGX)

27 May Base Reflectivity - Seattle (KATX)

Here is the grand view of the winds aloft from Earth:

27 May Earth: WPD at 850 mb

Here is Paul’s archived National Radar Composite from yesterday. Look at the wind map, and then the radar.

And here are the weather maps (click on any image to bring up a full gallery view)

22 May 2014 PNW Migration Update

Migration in the region last night was a bit reduced from yesterday.  It could be the north winds were slightly stronger and it could be we are running out of birds.  Probably a little of both.  You can see the intensity dropping across the country.  With a second report of Nighthawks it’s pretty much what you would expect.

Next migration update is planned for Tuesday 27 May. I’m taking off for a long weekend.

Pacific Northwest Radar: (Click on the links below to open the .gif files in a new window)

22 May Base Reflectivity - Portland (KRTX)

22 May Base Reflectivity – Gray’s Harbor (KLGX)

22 May Base Reflectivity - Seattle (KATX)

Here is the grand view of the winds aloft from Earth:

22 May Earth: WPD at 850 mb

Here is Paul’s archived National Radar Composite from yesterday. Look at the wind map, and then the radar.

And here are the weather maps (click on any image to bring up a full gallery view)

30 Apr 2014 PNW Migration Update

Mild winds out of the east driven by a pressure differential did not deter the northbound train.  Another night of “Green Doughnuts”  I’m getting the first reports of Yellow-breasted Chats in the Central Valley.  I haven’t heard of any Lazuli Buntings yet, but i may have skipped a listserve or two.

Pacific Northwest Radar: (Click on the links below to open the .gif files in a new window)

30 Apr Base Reflectivity - Portland (KRTX)

30 Apr Base Reflectivity – Gray’s Harbor (KLGX)

30 Apr  Base Reflectivity - Seattle (KATX)

Here is the grand view of the winds aloft from Earth:

30 Apr  Earth: WPD at 850 mb

Here is Paul’s archived National Radar Composite from yesterday. Look at the wind map, and then the radar. All will be revealed.

And here are the weather maps (click on any image to bring up a full gallery view)

I will be in the field tomorrow.  (first day the Sauvie Island management areas are open)  Next update is planned for Friday.

28 Mar 2014 PNW Migration Update

The birds found a window from sundown until around 1:00 am, where there was mainly an exodus from the Portland area and up the I5 corridor.  Then some significant weather moved in and it looks like they put down for the rest of the evening.

Winds will remain out of the south as a new low moves in.  But this one is much more organized and may have some heavy precipitation in it’s bowels, and with few breaks.

For those that are new to reading the radar loops: As you look at last night’s loops right around 02:30 Zulu (UTC) you will note a strong radial signal coming from the west of the radar.  That is the sun going down and is termed a “sun strobe”.  If you see one coming out of the east, that is sunrise.  Anyway, under normal circumstances in the PNW the birds take flight shortly after sundown and you can see the migrant bloom.

Since World War II, birds, bats, and bugs – the biodetections that appeared on military radar and subsequently on weather radar-have been considered a nuisance to be filtered out. Because they appeared at night and disappeared at dawn and were wispy and ethereal the detections of migrating birds on radar were termed “angels” by early radar technicians.  Angels indeed.

Pacific Northwest Radar: (Click on the links below to open the .gif files in a new window)

28 Mar Base Reflectivity - Portland (KRTX)

28 Mar Base Velocity - Portland (KRTX)

28 Mar HC - Portland (KRTX)

And because it is always a treat to watch the flight over the straits of Florida here is the Reflectivity loop from Key West last night:  It’s a long loop so wait for the sun strobe and then … boom!  Birds!

28 Mar Base Reflectivity – Key West (KBYX)

Here is Paul’s archived National Radar Composite from yesterday. We see the first significant movement along the SE Atlantic states, and some massive movement into Texas and up the Central Flyway.

And here are the weather maps (click on any image to bring up a full gallery view).

I will again be taking the weekend off from the updates, but i will check the radar and save any loops that show significant movement and get them posted on Monday.